The U.S. State Department under President Trump has introduced stricter vetting procedures for all visa seekers.
The State Department approved the new rules last week in an effort to follow-through on Trump’s campaign promise to tighten security issues involving visitors.
Under the new vetting procedures, foreigners would need to submit:
- Social media accounts for the last five years
- Biographical information for the last 15 years
- All previous passport numbers
- 15 years’ worth of travel history
- Employment history for the last 15 years
- Email addresses
- Phone numbers
- Any relatives, including siblings, children and spouses
A State Department official told Reuters that additional information would have to be provided if the agency required it.
The new measures may be the beginning of the “extreme vetting” process Trump promised.
Last month, Breitbart Texas reported how the Trump Administration was reviewing a plan to test foreign nationals’ ideologies to gauge potential threats.
Director of the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) Mark Krikorian told Breitbart Texas at the time that the process being considered is “necessary.”
“The idea is that we shouldn’t just screen people who may commit violence against us, but that we should also be keeping out people who hate our values,” Krikorian said. “Especially for immigrants, people who are going to be here. It’s less important for foreign tourists. But, we should try to keep people out from our society who hate us.”
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart Texas. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.
A terrorist attack appears underway at Resorts World Manila, in the Philippine capital, with reports of masked gunmen firing at guests and hotel employees alike. The government has dispatched rescue workers and SWAT teams to the site. The hotel hasreported itself to be on lockdown.
Update, 17:00 PM EST: CNN quotes Resorts World Manila Chief Operating Officer Stephen Reilly also saying one suspect was involved in the assault, and police are hunting him inside the resort buildings. The report also says emergency personnel have treated people at the scene for smoke inhalation and bruises, and the Philippines Red Cross transported three people to hospitals, but there are no reports of gunshot wounds.
Update, 16:45 PM EST: Contradicting earlier reports, Australia’s 9News quotes police chief Ronald dela Rosa saying no one was shot during the incident, and the attacker appeared to be a lone individual. In this account, the attacker fired into the air, shot a television screen, and fired some rounds into a stock room full of gambling chips with an M4 rifle. He also set a gambling table on fire with gasoline, as an eyewitness reported earlier. The assailant is reportedly still at large.
Chief Dela Rosa said the gunman left with a backpack full of gambling chips, suggesting the motive for the assault might have been robbery. He said the civilians taken to the hospital from the scene were suffering from smoke inhalations and bruises, the latter presumably incurred during the stampede to escape. He said there was no indication hostages have been taken.
Update, 3:45 PM EST: President Trump began his afternoon press conference by offering America’s thoughts and prayers to victims of the Manila attack. The president said, in his characteristic style, that it is “really sad what’s going on throughout the world with terror.”
Update, 3:00 PM EST: A spokesman for the Philippine Army said the police were in control of the situation at the resort, but added that the military was monitoring the situation closely.
Update, 2:50 PM EST: Another amateur video captures the panicked response to the attack, as screaming people flee the casino:
Update, 2:45 PM EST: Fox News quotes eyewitnesses who say a group of men wearing black uniforms and hoods, carrying long weapons, stormed the hotel:
The White House stated that President Trump is aware of the situation and is consulting with his national security team.
Original post follows:
Resorts World Manila, located conveniently to the airport in Pasay City, is actually a collection of hotels and restaurants, along with a casino and shopping mall.
Early reports indicate at least one masked man was seen shooting at guests on the second floor of the building. Some witnesses also reported hearing explosions. Gunfire could be heard in the background as frightened civilians fled the scene in videos posted on social media.
One witness reported that the attackers doused casino tables with a flammable liquid and set them on fire. Fires have also been reported on the second floor of the building. An eyewitness who heard gunshots and hid on the 3rd floor reported seeing “thick smoke.” Ambulances have been seen taking casualties to local hospitals.
The attack is believed to be the first of its kind in the northern Philippines, though the south of the country has been home to numerous Islamic insurgencies in modern history.